SailNet Community banner

1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
A couple of Google News stories caught my attention this morning.

OTTAWA — While scientists and environmentalists criticize him for doing little to fight climate change, Environment Minister Peter Kent also has been questioned by his Conservative party colleagues, including the prime minister, about whether the scientific evidence is real and requires a government response.

A series of letters signed by Kent have revealed he has faced many questions from colleagues in recent months about whether Canada needs to take action to reduce consumption of fossil fuels such as coal and gasoline that produce heat-trapping pollution and other toxic emissions in the atmosphere.

But in each of the letters, released through access to information legislation, Kent defended scientific evidence, while dismissing myths such as a suggestion from one Conservative that volcanoes were a major contributor to global warming.



Read more: Harper, Tory MPs challenge Kent on climate science, letters reveal
and

Canadian politics has traditionally avoided the religion factor. By common agreement, belief has been deemed a private matter, a facet of a candidate's qualifications for election that is not relevant to his or her ability to represent voters in parliament or to function as prime minister. The media has generally been respectful of this sensitivity and has averted coverage and commentary that touches on personal religious beliefs.

This may be changing.

Most environmentalists and scientists, together with a growing number of Canadians and others, are often bewildered by Prime Minister Stephen Harper's aversion to address or even to mention the spectre of global climate change. This profoundly important environmental issue is prominent in many political discussion in many countries of the world, an integral part of their budgets, economic plans and energy policies. All but a fringe minority now accept the essential science explaining climate change and are taking measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Not so in Canada.
The Prime Minister's seemingly antienvironment and anti-science agenda has prompted Andrew Nikiforuk, a prominent Canadian journalist, to search for the root cause of this behaviour. In his quest for an explanation, Nikiforuk has broken from convention, raised the sensitive religion issue, and written an opinion piece in TheTyee.ca (Mar. 26/12) titled Understanding Harper's Evangelical Mission, subtitled, "Signs mount that Canada's government is beholden to a religious agenda averse to science and rational debate."
The Religion Factor in Canada's Environmental Politics

That lead me to

The Tyee – Understanding Harper's Evangelical Mission

The Tyee – Harper's Christian Right Wing

and

The Walrus | October 2006 | "Stephen Harper and the Theo-cons" by Marci McDonald

That helps explain a few things.

Other prominent members of the Alliance include Preston Manning and Chuck Strahl.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,160 Posts
Well, let me get the rant off my chest first.

Both the Tyee and Walrus have a distinctive left wing bias that goes beyond even the Toronto Star. They are as credible as articles coming out of the old Alberta Report, which was as distinctively right wing.

Conservative luminaries as respected as Preston Manning have suggested it is time that being an environmentalist IS a conservative value. I can't agree with him more. It bothers me that an issue that should not be right wing or left wing such as the environment has often been delineated that if your care about the environment, you must be a leftie, or the least, a liberal, and if your conservative you are a climate change denier, evangelical nut bar.

Those descriptions must stop. Just as there is no left wing or right wing way of providing safe drinking water there should be no LW or RW desire to protect our shared environment.

The recent proposed changes to the Fisheries Act is an example. I am concerned that even though the provincial Fish and Game and Wildlife Associations have expressed concern about the changes, Harper is going ahead. Oh, as a bone, he has formed a national Fish and Game advisory. Big deal, wildlife issues are provincial jurisdiction, fisheries are a shared one, as are migratory birds.

Although I am a strong supporter of this government, on this issue they deserve a #fail.
 

·
Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
Joined
·
4,526 Posts
I agree with Cupper and hope that the right/left divide does not become any more prominent in Canadian politics (especially environment) than necessary. More broadly, I wonder if the truth is that Harper is more like the American right wingers than we have given him credit (blame) for? It may be that he is just smart enough to realize that being too overt on issues like climate change, same sex marriage, abortion, etc would mean that his party would unelectable in Canada. This was easy to do in a minority government where it made no sense to promote right wing policies since they could not get passed anyway. Now they have a majority it is different - although he realizes that eventually he must face the people. I suspect that some interesting discussions are being held among the Conservative brain-trust over how much, how soon.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I am not so much concerned about left / right politics. I am concerned that an apocalyptic theological perspective is a driving force behind our country's environmental policies, social policies, foreign policies, etc..
 

·
AEOLUS II
Joined
·
2,938 Posts
So any opposition to Global Warming alarmism is a result of anti-science quackery and religious nuttery.

Seems like the same old story to me.

Where's the "news??"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,160 Posts
I am not so much concerned about left / right politics. I am concerned that an apocalyptic theological perspective is a driving force behind our country's environmental policies, social policies, foreign policies, etc..
I hope your not imposing a reality in the U.S. to Canada (apocalyptic theology).

There is no indication that is a fact or even hinted at.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I hope your not imposing a reality in the U.S. to Canada (apocalyptic theology).

There is no indication that is a fact or even hinted at.
The Tyee and Walrus articles more than hint at the religious connections. Or simply dismiss them because they are "leftist."

I avoided making US comparisons, but I think they are there. Many of Harper's statements when he was with NCC sound much like the US system. Two of his close buddies from the Calgary School, Ted Morton and Tom Flanagan make the same "quacking noises." They are both American born.

The Alliance Church (odd similarity to some political parties) includes the following in their statement of belief:

The second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ is imminent and will be personal, visible, and premillennial. This is the believer’s blessed hope and is a vital truth which is an incentive to holy living and faithful service.
With the second coming on the door step, why bother attending to environmental issues?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,160 Posts
The Tyee and Walrus articles more than hint at the religious connections. Or simply dismiss them because they are "leftist."
I don't dismiss either, but there is no question they are at best coloured in their philosophy.

I avoided making US comparisons, but I think they are there. Many of Harper's statements when he was with NCC sound much like the US system. Two of his close buddies from the Calgary School, Ted Morton and Tom Flanagan make the same "quacking noises." They are both American born.
I have met and had discussions with Morton some 12-15 years ago. He concerned me then, and that concern has not dissipated, and it has nothing to do with him being born in America. That is not and should not be an issue. His philosophy is a legitimate one. Flanagan is a brilliant tactician who wins more then he loses, and understands long term goals.

Harper may have been influenced by the "Calgary School", but you have to admit, just like Chretien before him, he governs from the center, to the exasperation of many conservatives. They stick with Harper because they know although he will not tackle some contentious issues, such as abortion or same-sex marriage, he will also not tear down more of conservative social issues then already has happened.

Fiscal conservatives do have some concerns, with some reason. It looks like perhaps our deficit will be reduced and we will be back in surplus. Time will tell.

The Alliance Church (odd similarity to some political parties) includes the following in their statement of belief:

The second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ is imminent and will be personal, visible, and premillennial. This is the believer’s blessed hope and is a vital truth which is an incentive to holy living and faithful service.​

With the second coming on the door step, why bother attending to environmental issues?
Seems they missed that premillennial deadline by at least a dozen years. And I have been very critical of the evangelical point of view on many issues, but especially their head in the sand on environmental ones.

It is interesting that an avowed evangelical Preston Manning is promoting that conservatives must jump aboard environmental issues, saying it is a conservative issue.

As always, Manning has been significantly ahead of his time as a visionary, being proven correct more often than not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Well gee... I remember back in the election period EVERYONE wanted a Tory smarter than everyone government. ESPECIALLY ALBERTA.

You got it..... stop bitching and except what you wanted.
My concern is with the federal Conservative Party, not the provincial Progressive Conservative Party. Redford is a Lougheed, Joe Clark type of Tory. The AB equivalent to the federal Conservative is the Wildrose Alliance. (Interesting coincidence in the name.) Smith is also part of Calgary School.

I am not surprised to see Lee Richardson come back home to work for Redford.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Cups

I think you are right on the social issues. Harper would lose those battles.

The environmental issues really concern. I was not a great fan of Nikiforuk when he was an education critic, bit his environmental stances have impressed me.

The other area that concerns me is foreign policy. Some positions have an apocalyptic connection. Some evangelicals are pro-Israel for eschatological reasons.

Mr.(Rev. John) Hagee is an author of several books about the interpretation of biblical prophecies. He says he believes the Bible assigns Israel a pivotal role as a harbinger of the second coming. Citing passages from Revelation and Ezekiel, he argues that conflict between Israel and Iran may be a sign that that time is approaching.
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/14/washington/14israel.html?pagewanted=all

Bush did not much buy into this view, but there is some evidence Reagan, the darling of the US Conservatives, did.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
and that's who I was referring to. The Fed's. All we heard here was "Oh the glorious Tories... what a wonderful change." Well at least it was a change from the Liberals.

I read a number of web articles around the election and it seemed everyone out west wanted the Tories. They wanted representation. Well now they have it. Not only in their party but Ontario has sent out our brightest (have a look around: gotee, mustache, cigs in the pocket, baseball hat, pickup in the parking lot, IQ of a grapefruit) to work in the west so your now up on population too.

So you won on both fronts.

Ontario is actually kinda nice now... empty.

I guess I am not one of the "everyone's".

I am not known for my support of Harper and the Conservatives. Plus I have the worst MP on the planet, Rob Anders.
 

·
Senior Moment Member
Joined
·
13,282 Posts
I agree with Cupper and hope that the right/left divide does not become any more prominent in Canadian politics (especially environment) than necessary. More broadly, I wonder if the truth is that Harper is more like the American right wingers than we have given him credit (blame) for? It may be that he is just smart enough to realize that being too overt on issues like climate change, same sex marriage, abortion, etc would mean that his party would unelectable in Canada. This was easy to do in a minority government where it made no sense to promote right wing policies since they could not get passed anyway. Now they have a majority it is different - although he realizes that eventually he must face the people. I suspect that some interesting discussions are being held among the Conservative brain-trust over how much, how soon.
I held my nose and voted Tory last time simply because they were the only party with its act together. I had exactly the misgivings you enumerate re: them having a majority but so far it seems like the religious loonies and other one note wonders are being held in check.

Harper DOES have to get re-elected and he's smart enough to know that, in Canada, straying too far from center will be fatal for them. Even a little too far will drop them back to minority status at least. The only way for them to keep getting majorities is for them to continue to be de facto Liberals - "Lougheed" Tories. Just look how many tries and how many years it took him to gain enough trust to be given a majority. It may be a solid majority in terms of the number of seats they got but it isn't NEARLY as solid in terms of how much the voters trust him (them). I am a case in point and there are LOTS like me out there.
 

·
Super Fuzzy Moderator
Joined
·
17,137 Posts
I guess I am not one of the "everyone's".

I am not known for my support of Harper and the Conservatives. Plus I have the worst MP on the planet, Rob Anders.
You havn't had a butchers at the Australian parliament in recent times have you Jack ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
You havn't had a butchers at the Australian parliament in recent times have you Jack ?
Do tell.

This is mine.

In a previous life.


And in this "life".


He also fell asleep in a meeting of Veterans.

He was the sole vote against Nelson Mandela honourary Canadian Citizenship.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,160 Posts
Anders is an embarrassment no matter what political stripe you are. If he was an American, he would be a regular on a Glenn Beck or Rush Limgbaugh show.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
WOW!! What a broad brush. You forgot to add "like to work for a living, even if it's only manual labor". But perhaps that goes with grapefruit sized brain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
254 Posts
Sorry last post was in response to oldsailors comment on the the people moving from Ontario to Alberta. Still trying to figure out how to post other peoples quotes. Not working out to well for me. Must be the grapefruit sized brain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,378 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Sorry last post was in response to oldsailors comment on the the people moving from Ontario to Alberta. Still trying to figure out how to post other peoples quotes. Not working out to well for me. Must be the grapefruit sized brain.
Just use the
button on the bottom right (aft starboard). That also provides a link back to the original posting.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,475 Posts
The Conservatives are pragmatic politicians. To get elected you first have to get on the ticket, and, especially in the west, that means kowtowing to the religious right. Once on the ticket you have to get elected, which means you have to appeal to the middle. Then, once elected, you have to STAY elected, which means you remain the in the middle.
As a non -religious pragmatic fiscal conservative/social liberal centrist, I have a hard time getting excited about climate change doomsday. Rather than trying to put the genie back in the bottle, I think our time, energy and money would be better spent adapting.
The Kyoto accord was, and is a joke- take a look at China's environmental record and reluctance to adopt 21st century emissions management practices. If the largest manufacturing nation on the planet is not on board, then what's the point?
I am all about conservation and recycling- Not be cause I am a passionate tree-hugger/whale saver, but because it saves me money, and THAT is how the argument has to be couched if you want to get the average centrist middle-class consumer on board. Want to get the average Canadian on board? You don't need David Suzuki chiding everyone, you need Kevin O'Leary pointing out the money you make by using CFLs. if you're not sending it to the hydro company, you can invest it.
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
Top